Thursday, December 15, 2011

Zombie Hordes in Flames of War

I was perusing the Miniatures Page and one of the members of the forum postes a few photos of his HUGE Zombie Horde.  Here is a link to the TMP article:  Here is a link to the individuals nicely painted Zombie Horde! 

I've contemplated doing some Weird World War II scenarios with Zombie Hordes, but haven't taken the plunge to purchase the figures, yet.  I did, however, come up with some rules to run them as a unit which can be attached to any army as a divisional support platoon available to any Infantry Company.  Here are my thoughts on how to rate a Zombie Horde in a Flames of War game based upon my experience with the rules - I post these here for purposes of letting others play-test them and let me know in the comments how well they work!  I hope you enjoy and I will try to keep this page updated more frequently!

So, without further fanfare, here is how I have rated the Zombie Horde:

ZOMBIE HORDE - a WWWII Divisional Support Platoon

0-1 Zombie Horde Platoon Per Army

Special Rules: May be fielded by any Infantry Company army list, with consent of the opposing player, and must be fully painted and based.

Zombie Horde Command SMG Team:  Fearless Veteran, 35 points per team, maximum of three teams per Horde.
Special Rules for Zombie Horde Command:
The Zombie Horde Command is a command base represented by three figures on small base (decoration and special paint jobs PLEASE, the cooler the better!).  The Zombie Horde Command must remain "In Command" of the Zombie Horde per the usual command rules with a command distance of 2" regardless of their quality rating/training.  The Zombe Horde Command is also equipped with a "Brain-Launcher" which may be fired at an enemy stand in the shooting phase of the Zombie Horde player's turn which will in turn release the Zombie Horde!   The "Brain-Launcher" is a weapon which contains the concentrated odor of brain material which can be sensed by Zombies and drives them into a killing frenzy.  See the special rules below
Zombie Horde Command SMG Team:    Range 4", ROF 3, Anti-Tank 1, Firepower 6, Brain-Launcher

Brain-Launcher:   Range 16"  ROF 2, Anti-Tank 0, Firepower  N/A,  Indirect Fire.
Notes: Any Enemy platoon hit by the Brain Launcher must make Morale Check or break and run!!!  Unlike normal, only the ENEMY STAND hit by the Brain Launcher will flee and run - directly away from the Zombie Horde.  The remaining stands are not subject to the test and will remain in their positions, unaware of the danger they are in until it is too late!  Any enemy stand which is hit by the Zombie Horde Brain-Launcher attacts Zombies, who will move at 6" plus 1d6" toward the stand.  The Zombie Horde while in their frenzied state will initiate close assaults on any stand/unit between them and the Zombie Brain affected stand in an attempt to consume the brained stand!  Mark any affected stand with a suitable marker to note they have been "Brained" by the Zombie Horde Command.  The Zombie Launcher has the Indiret Fire capability and may be used to target stands behind other units and follows the rules for mortars.

Snipers and Zombie Horde Command Teams:  Zombie Horde Command Teams may be targeted by sniper teams individually and if so targeted, must save or be removed as the stand targeted.  Snipers know who to kill in the Zombie Horde and must have a direct line of sight (may not pass through an intervening base!) to fire directly at them.  Snipers which are in an elevated position may shoot over friendly, or enemy teams to target the Zombie Command Team(s).

ZOMBIE HORDE: 10-60 Bases per army.

Zombie Horde bases are modeled with 4 to 5 Zombies per Meduim Base, minimum of 10 bases per Horde, up to a maximum of 60 bases per Horde.  Each base is 10 points.

Weaponry: Various, typically hands, teeth, bloody stumps, etc.  Range 0", ROF N/A, Anti-tank N/A, Firepower N/A
Zombie Horde Bases are rated as Tank Assault 3  (They gum up the tracks you know!)

Special Rules: 
ZOMBIE HORDE:  Zombie Hordes move forward at 1d6 inches per turn until they are within 8" of a non-Zombie Horde stand/platoon.  Zombies are difficult to control and at best are "herded" forward by their handlers, the Zombie Horde Command.  As long as the Zombie Horde is "In Command" they are moved normally by the controlling player, but may only move 1d6" per turn.  A player with a Zombie Horde Command may elect to pass a quality check to move the Zombie Horde at a speed beyond the normal 1d6 inches per turn.  If the Zombie Horde Command stand passes the test, the Zombie Horde may move 6" plus 1d6" that turn.  If the Zombie Horde Command fails the test, they are removed as casualties and the Zombie Horde will then move toward the closest non-Zombie Horde platoon/stand.  If there is more than one Zombie Horde Command base in the Horde and "In Command," the Zombie Horde remains stationary as the remaining command team attempts to re-direct them forward and regain control of the Zombie Horde.

Zombie Hordes will initiate a close assault upon any non-Zombie Horde platoon (not including the Zombie Horde Command base) which ends their move within 4" of any Zombie Horde base, regardless of which side controls the Zombie Horde and regardless of whose turn it is, Zombies can potentially conduct a close assault every player turn if they remain within 4" of any non-Zombie Horde platoon.  To avoid initiating an assault if a Zombie Horde is within 4" of a non-Zombie Horde platoon, the Zombie Horde Command team may elect to pass a quality check to gain control of their horde.  If they pass the test, the Zombie Horde remains in control and will not conduct the assault.  Remember, this test is VOLUNTARY and the controling player does NOT have to attempt it.  If the test is attempted and failed, the Zombie Horde will initiate a close assault on the non-Zombie Platoon AND the Zombie Command Team is removed as a casualty!
HARD TO PUT DOWN! Shooting at Zombies is easy.  Hitting Zombies is also easy because they don't dodge, attempt to get out of the way, or use any cover whatsoever.  However, putting them down PERMANENTLY is NOT Easy!  Any platoon shooting at a Zombie Horde hits them on a 3+, regardless of quality rating and may use full rate of fire, regardless of whether they moved or not, including gun teams (fear of Zombies is quite a motivator to keep shooting!).  Any Zombie Horde which is hit has a saving throw of 2+ to shake off the damage and continue moving forward, as even half a zombie is still deadly!  Zombie Hordes never test for morale for any purposes and will continue to move toward the closest non-Zombie Horde platoon regardless of which side it is on, unless they are In Command of a Zombie Horde Command team which can direct their movement.

THE WAY IS SHUT:  Zombie Hordes which move to within 4" of any non-Zombie Horde team or platoon will initiate a close assault on their turn and need not test to close assault, even against tanks.  Zombie Hordes cannot be pinned in defensive fire and all platoons within 8" of a Zombie Horde may fire in defensive fire at full ROF regardless if they are pinned, so long as they have line of sight to at least one Zombie Horde base.  (Better dead than a Zombie!)  Zombie Hordes always hit non-Zombie Horde teams on a 3+, regardless of quality in close assault.  Enemy teams who are close-assaulted by Zombie Hordes may NOT counter-assault unless/until they pass a quality test and always test as if they are Conscript troops for purposes of the counter-assault rule.  Even Fearless Veterans know they don't want to get THAT close to a Zombie!  If a unit passes their morale to counter-assault, they may do so, however, they need not conduct the close assault and may elect to consolidate by running away and may immediately make a double rate move away from the Zombie Horde and they are not pinned at the end of this move!  Units which test and fail are broken and remain in contact or subject to a Zombie follow-up assault.  Enemy bases which are destroyed in close assault will become zombies on the following enemy turn on a roll of 4+, so record how many bases are killed in the close assault.  If a player does not have sufficient bases to represent the newly spawned stand, the stand is lost.  Zombie Horde bases previously destroyed may be used for the newly animated zombie stands.  Zombie Hordes may not test, or conduct a break-through assault if they win in a close assault, they may only consolidate 2" as they hunt down the remaining victims, who are doubtlessly paralyzed with fear and cowering in a fox-hole, to consume their brains.  All non-Zombie Horde platoons within 8" of a Zombie Horde assault must pass a quality test at the end of the assault or they will immediately break and move a full 6" move away from the Zombie Horde, even if it would cause them to come within 1" of an enemy team!  Stands/platoons fleeing from a Zombie Horde and which must come into base contact with an enemy team will immediately conduct a close assault on the enemy team with no defensive fire permitted as they decide to fight their way out! 

Remember, these things are both a boon and a burden on the controlling player, as if the enemy player pins down your platoons and lures them into YOUR troops - you could have a whole lot of problems.

I hope you all enjoy these play-test rules and have fun with them!



  1. These are pretty good, better than cbaxter's rules, although I think you could probably get by for simplicities sense with less 'special rules' to get a similar effect.
    Personally I would just count them as conscripts for shooting purposes, drop the infantry save and require a firepower test (if you hit a zombie with a 155mm it will be a red mist, not a zombie) instead. This should get a similar effect which more accurately reflects the differences in weaponry, without all the extra rules.
    I love the command teams! I just get images of guys on bikes or kettengrads racing around throwing haunches of meat! The brain launcher is a bit gimmicky but it seems to solve the otherwise difficult issue of directing the zombies.
    Great ideas!

  2. @ Samulus: The gimmicky part is the whole idea of zombies in the first place. They are WWWII to start with - so why not go over the top with some "feasible" technology to attempt to control/guide them? Besides, I've not seen any other rule set give anyone any feasible means of controlling the zombie hordes without breaking the myth of what zombies are. I hope you play-test them and you enjoy the rules. I have more ideas for other Optional Rules which I will try to post monthly over the next year.

    Cheers - Jovian1

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